MSP Today Expert Feature
October 26, 2017

Monster MSP Mash-up: Vista Acquires Datto for Autotask Merger


As a child of the ‘80s, I remember Voltron well. When disaster strikes, five mechanical lions join to create the Defender of the Universe, and then proceed to save the day. I’m sure many are reading thinking, what does Voltron have to do with technology today? A lot, actually. For the modern MSP the struggle is to create a complete portfolio, set to not only protect client data and strive to advance operations. Sometimes this requires some moving and shaking – or mergers and acquisitions as it were.

Today, the MSP space saw a bit of a shakeup. Vista Equity Partners is purchasing Datto, and merging it with Autotask, bringing together two of the market’s preeminent managed services platforms and pairing leading IT and data protection expertise and offerings. 

“We’re honored to be joining forces with both the world’s premier software investor, Vista Equity Partners, and with Autotask, the provider of the most essential tools for the MSP space,” said Datto’s founder and CEO, Austin McChord. “This unique combination of talent with a track record of success marks a new chapter that will make an even bigger impact for our Managed Service Provider partners, by delivering an unprecedented set of capabilities for them to serve millions of small businesses in the future.”

Moving forward, the product portfolio will meld Datto’s business continuity, backup, disaster recovery, networking and then some with Autotask’s professional services automation, remote monitoring and management. Keeping committed to each MSP’s product lines, Datto CEO Austin McChord will lead the newly formed entity.

The organization now possesses a footprint with clients in 125 countries, numbering in the hundreds of thousands. And team of 1,300, in nine countries willing and able to provide ITSPs and MSPs support from operations through delivery.

Predicting how this story ends, well, that’s somewhat of a “choose your own adventure” book at this point. Some say the merger will result in opportunities for the channel, as Autotask enables channel partners with a rich third-party ecosystem, empowering heavily customizable deployments. Datto shares this approach, so I’d expect this practice to continue. MSPs do not want a one-size-fits all – the coercion of choice is powerful.

Another expectation is a flurry of activity in the MSP space. Joe Panettieri predicts the distinct possibly of several perceived rivals jumping in on the partnership action in the coming weeks. Companies like Veeam, Infrascale, eFolder, Cisco, Barracuda MSP, Acronis & StorageCraft in Panettieri’s eyes are poised for some posturing, with others such as SolarWinds MSP, Kaseya (News - Alert), ConnectWise and Continuum seen currently as top competitors to the Datto-Autotask entity.

Only time will where the chips fall, but this is clearly a sign of the times, and I agree with Panettieri’s projection of more to come in the MSP space. As Autotask and Datto unite, there is no impending threat to the universe, but countless SMBs out there seeking a savior for operations.




Edited by Mandi Nowitz




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